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Minister for Economy, Vaughan Gething has appointed two new members of the Welsh Industrial Development Advisory Board (WIDAB). Beginning on 1 June 2023, these appointments will run for a period of three years.

First published:
19 June 2023
Last updated:

Originally established under the Welsh Development Agency Act 1975, WIDAB provides advice to the Minister for Economy on issues relating to the Welsh Economy and assists the Welsh Government in its ambition to drive sustainable and inclusive growth across the regions of Wales through the Economic Action Plan. Central to WIDAB’s role is providing advice on individual projects requesting support of over £1 million from the relevant schemes within the Economy Futures Fund.

The newly appointed board members are:

  • Trefor Owen
  • Owen Derbyshire

The 2 newly appointed board members will join the 5 existing board members who were reappointed for a further 3 year term in November 2022. The Chair of the board Michael Macphail, who was reappointed for a further 3 year term in July 2022, will lead the proceedings of board meetings and help fellow board members to reach a consensus so that suitable recommendations can be made to the Minister.

The current level of remuneration is £198 per day for each board member for an average commitment of one day a month. Meetings are held on a monthly basis. 

The appointments have been made in accordance with the Governance Code on Public Appointments. All appointments are made on merit and political activity plays no part in the selection process.

None of the members have declared any political activity in the last five years. Trefor Owen serves as a Chair of the Welsh Government’s Rural Payments Independent Appeals Panel.  

The newly appointed WIDAB board members:

Trefor Owen is a former Director of Land Management with UK and European experience of large-scale land management, climate transition and adaptation. He was previously responsible for the long-term care and sustainable management of Scotland’s 650,000 Hectares national forests and land. He is a strong advocate for sustainable resource use, multi-dimensional land management and further development of the bio-economy.

Owen Derbyshire is Chief Executive of Keep Wales Tidy, the charity working to enhance and protect Wales' environment for the benefit of future generations. He previously worked for S4C, the Welsh-language broadcaster, as Director of Digital and Marketing.  Prior to that, he worked at a number of technology businesses across a wide range of sectors. He also has non-executive experience, having served on the boards of S4C, Shelter Cymru, and a number of other small charities. He was previously a member of the Welsh Language Partnership Council, and the Legal Services Consumer Panel.